What is a spike train?

Richard Norman rsnorman at mediaone.net
Tue Jul 10 14:10:21 EST 2001

On Tue, 10 Jul 2001 14:40:59 -0400, "Isidore"
<isidore at mailandnews.com> wrote:

>Hi everyone,
>    Is a spike train just a series of axon potentials? Can anyone give me a
>precise but easy to understand definition (or point me to one)?
>        Thank you.
You are correct.  And your definition is precise and easy to

 Action potentials are called spikes because when you look at an
oscilloscope or chart display (at slow speed) each action potential is
a vertical line, a "spike",  rising out of the baseline.  A "train" is
a series or line of things arranged so that one comes after another.
So a spike train is just a series of action potentials along one axon
(or, possibly, along several axons in a nerve).

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